Treaty 1 Territory, Homeland of the Red River Métis, Winnipeg, MB – Manitoba Liberals announced today they will reform the Employment Income Assistance system by ending penalties for work and ensuring people who want to work will have access to the resources they need through a ‘Manitoba Works for Good’ jobs program.
Manitoba Liberals also committed to implementing a guaranteed dignified income (mincome) for people over 60 and those living with severe mental or physical disabilities.
“Manitoba’s Employment Income Assistance (EIA) system has barely changed in more than 35 years. Instead of being designed to lift people out of poverty and be more self-sufficient, Manitoba’s EIA program has been designed to punish people in poverty,” said Manitoba Liberal Party Leader and MLA for St. Boniface Dougald Lamont.
Many who receive EIA benefits and supports want to work. However, the more a person tries to work, the less benefits they end up receiving.
Manitoba’s EIA system is punitive to those who pursue school, work, or even for volunteering. In addition, people with disabilities are denied support if they are married. This creates a crushing burden for many families which may result in divorce, so that a person who is disabled is not a financial burden on their family.
Manitoba Liberals commit to:
Implementing a provincial guaranteed dignified income (Mincome) for people with severe physical or mental disabilities, as well as people over 60. It will be top-up based on the previous year’s income;
Removing barriers to work and volunteer for people on EIA, including by increasing the amount a person can receive when volunteering from $100 to $500 a month;
Creating the ‘Manitoba Works for Good’ voluntary jobs program which will provide wage and job subsidies for not-for-profit and other organizations to provide work for the public benefit and for community improvements projects.
“At the debate on poverty sponsored by Make Poverty History, the NDP made it quite clear that they have no intention to lift a finger for people living in poverty. If you want a real choice and real change, the only party that’s offering action to lift people out of poverty and ensure they can live in dignity is the Manitoba Liberal Party,” said Lamont.